New USN CVL

Cordy

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The new USN 30 year shipbuilding plan released Dec 9, which think very unlikely to be funded by the new Admin/Congress.

My understanding the plan shows the 5th and final CVN Ford class to be ordered in 2024, will then transfer to building a new light carrier design in 2028, not another 100,000t supercarrier, the CVL, L standing for Light.

No details whether nuclear or conventionally powered, maybe similar in concept or totally different to the ~80,000t Kitty Hawk class, PA2(QNLZ), Chinese Type 002 and PANG, which should cost less than half that of a Ford. The CBO estimated that Ford build cost $16.2 billion in 2019 dollars, the Navy figure of $13.3 billion is in then year 2008$.
 

TomS

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PANG seems like the closest to a thing the USN would actually want. But it pretty clearly demonstrates the limitations of such a ship. Total of less than 36 embarked aircraft, which basically rules out being able to handle the full spectrum of aircraft that the USN currently embarks. You'd probably have to standardize on one tactical aircraft type -- either all F-35C or F-18E/F/G -- plus a small number of E-2s, MQ-25s, and MH-60s. Or maybe, maybe one manned type plus a strike-enabled drone wingman type?
 

Josh_TN

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I don't see the cost savings in designing a brand new CVN. If the US wants to go that route it seems like more of the America class would be the cheap way of doing it. But I sincerely doubt that the US will stop building the Ford class after it already has invested in the design and infrastructure to build it. Also politically it seems unlikely Congress would allow it even if the Navy attempted to cease production. The USN was kicking around the idea of retiring Truman without an RCOH (I personally believe this was a bluff) and Congress shot the idea down, and that wasn't even a CVN under construction that would provide a lot more trickle down contracts across congressional districts than an RCOH.

ETA: also practically speaking a full sized CVN just has a lot more flexibility than smaller vessels or anything without catapults. And once you throw on all the power requirements of a modern carrier, especially with the EMALs launching system (which is very necessary to have full flexibility for future UAVs), I don't see where the savings would come from.
 

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If the US wants to go that route it seems like more of the America class would be the cheap way of doing it.

The problem is that even the Americas are not well designed to function as full-time carriers. They don't have the magazine space to really function as a strike carrier for a prolonged period, and they can't do CTOL without major redesign. And without CTOL, you're stuck with STOVL F-35B, no AEW, no EW, probably no tanker support, etc. You could possibly develop the V-22 for AEW and tanker roles (only as a recovery tanker, because it's way too slow to fly along with a strike). But by that point, it's probably cheaper to design a new carrier to use existing aircraft instead.
 

Moose

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If the US wants to go that route it seems like more of the America class would be the cheap way of doing it.

The problem is that even the Americas are not well designed to function as full-time carriers. They don't have the magazine space to really function as a strike carrier for a prolonged period, and they can't do CTOL without major redesign. And without CTOL, you're stuck with STOVL F-35B, no AEW, no EW, probably no tanker support, etc. You could possibly develop the V-22 for AEW and tanker roles (only as a recovery tanker, because it's way too slow to fly along with a strike). But by that point, it's probably cheaper to design a new carrier to use existing aircraft instead.
Indeed, and that's why the only kinda realistic "CVL" strategy of recent years was that in the CSBA fleet study from late '16/early '17, which aimed the new carrier at the slot currently occupied by the LHA/Ds rather than at replacing the CVNs. A CATOBAR CV which could support Hawkeye, Stingray, and a couple F-35 squadrons could also still support an MEU's aviation component when required, and troops/vehicles/landing craft/etc could be spread out to smaller (hopefully cheaper) amphibs. Of course, that does nothing for the CVN cost problem on its own, and adds the potential for cost problems with the new CV.
 

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I would expect the Marines be be really anxious about that. They need the large flight decks to continue doing vertical envelopment amphibious landings. Replacing the LHAs with CVLs kinda destroys that capability, because now your flight decks and your Marines aren't necessarily in the same place at the same time.
 

Cordy

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PANG seems like the closest to a thing the USN would actually want. But it pretty clearly demonstrates the limitations of such a ship. Total of less than 36 embarked aircraft, which basically rules out being able to handle the full spectrum of aircraft that the USN currently embarks. You'd probably have to standardize on one tactical aircraft type -- either all F-35C or F-18E/F/G -- plus a small number of E-2s, MQ-25s, and MH-60s. Or maybe, maybe one manned type plus a strike-enabled drone wingman type?
Re number of a/c on PANG only 36, compared to a Kitty Hawk ~70, maybe difference partly due to the Rafale not having folding wings and so limiting number it can carry?
I don't see the cost savings in designing a brand new CVN. If the US wants to go that route it seems like more of the America class would be the cheap way of doing it. But I sincerely doubt that the US will stop building the Ford class after it already has invested in the design and infrastructure to build it. Also politically it seems unlikely Congress would allow it even if the Navy attempted to cease production. The USN was kicking around the idea of retiring Truman without an RCOH (I personally believe this was a bluff) and Congress shot the idea down, and that wasn't even a CVN under construction that would provide a lot more trickle down contracts across congressional districts than an RCOH.

ETA: also practically speaking a full sized CVN just has a lot more flexibility than smaller vessels or anything without catapults. And once you throw on all the power requirements of a modern carrier, especially with the EMALs launching system (which is very necessary to have full flexibility for future UAVs), I don't see where the savings would come from.
Thinking cost savings the driver for the CVL, Ford just too expensive, the Navy has higher priorities on its budget, the new Columbia class SSBN(X) ~$100 billion program, many more Virginias at $3.5 billion each etc,etc. The 30 year plan shows number of CVNs possibly dropping to eight.

Re the "Department of Defense Comprehensive Selected Acquisition Reports for the Annual 2019 Reporting Requirement as Updated by the President’s Fiscal Year 2021 Budget" showed the four Ford class ships at total cost of $59.3 billion including AAG and EMALS for build and development, ~$15 billion each. The CBO October 2019 "An Analysis of the Navy’s Fiscal Year 2020 Shipbuilding Plan" showed build cost figure excluding development of $53.4 billion.

In October 2019 "Modly noted that the carrier strike group has always been a large expense for the Navy but that today it constitutes a much larger percentage of the bill. In the 1980s, the carrier strike group cost about 14 percent of the total Navy operating cost. Today it’s 31 percent."
 

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If the USN wasn't going to adopt the Ford, the window for that decision was a decade ago. Developing an entirely new carrier and its associated infrastructure isn't going to save much in terms of total lifecycle cost, considering that all of the infrastructure for the Ford class will need to remain intact as well. What might help is divesting Nimitz class at their RCOH point, but Congress seems unwilling to allow that to happen.
 

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Re number of a/c on PANG only 36, compared to a Kitty Hawk ~70, maybe difference partly due to the Rafale not having folding wings and so limiting number it can carry?

The PANG number is based around SCAF/FCAS, not Rafale, but those models don't show folded wings either, so that may be a factor. However, aircraft growth has continued apace elsewhere as well. The "maximum density spot factor" for F-35C is supposed to be around 1.24 times that of F/A-18C. And the F/A-18C's spotting factor is about 1.2 times the previous standard (the A-7), IIRC. So we're looking at modern aircraft taking around 50% more deck space than the counterparts that set the capacity for Forrestal.

And that's based on the simplistic measure of "spotting factor." In practical terms, the smaller ships have less slack and probably have a harder time keeping up sortie rates as they get closer to their maximum capacity. That's one reason the QE2s have such a low nominal aircraft complement -- that's what they can carry while maximizing sortie generation. Paradoxically, adding more aircraft might actually reduce sortie rates.

And then you get into issues like what fraction of the smaller flight deck is usable for a max density storm spot (since you can never fit everything below decks).
 

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I suspect an F-35C or F-18E/F doesn't have a spot factor bigger than an F-14, never mind things like A-3s and A-5s. There were always big aircraft on US CVs and I'm amazed they could ever sortie them effectively without ruling out certain types of air ops in certain conditions. That said current USN airwings seem to be much smaller than the capacity of a Nimitz in terms of spot factor. The standardization of airframes and increased sortie rate by having open deck space probably drives this somewhat (an F-18 is basically 90% of the airwing now) but I think budget constraints are the main culprit. It seems to me your average CVW could easily accept another squadron of fighter type aircraft, given the spot limitations 80's CVWs took up. Perhaps adopting UAVs will allow for a larger inventory of cheaper aircraft, starting with the MQ-25s.
 

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Interesting reading here: https://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.1027.7266&rep=rep1&type=pdf



1608051902275.png
That's 72 aircraft in a Nimitz, with a nominal capacity of 80 F/A-18 equivalents.

A CVL (really more like a CVV in size) probably has about 2/3 the deck area and hangar area, so roughly 50 F/A-18 equivalents. The comparable wing for a CVV might look like this, with around half the tactical aircraft.

F-35C281.2434.72
E-2D41.716.84
CMV-22B21.362.76
MQ-26A41.14.4
H-6040.512.04

The MQ-25 number is a SWAG, the CMV-22B number is based on the MV-22 and comparing against some numbers for Marine aircraft including F-35B. And yeah, I was surprised to see that the spot factor for the Osprey on amphibs was actually larger than for the F-35B.

The F/A-18E/F/G has basically the same spot factor as an F-35C (1.23), so you can swap them one for one but you need to include EF-18Gs in the mix, so it's maybe 24 F/A-18E/F and 4 EF-18G.
 

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@TomS I get a little bit more for a CVF/PANG sized carrier, based on counting actual spots (with similar density to keep an apples to apples comparison):

CVN-78: 38 flight deck + 27 hangar = 65 fixed wing

CVF/PANG: 25 flight deck + 20-22 hangar
= ~47 fixed wing

So a CVL should be good for ~36 fighters plus 10 to 12 support aircraft. In both cases I’m leaving some space for helos and ~10% surge margin which could be obtained by maxing out the forward deck park (which would however block the bow cat and slow down cyclic deck ops).
 

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TomS

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The MN is stating that PANG will carry up to 30 SCAF, and I'm adding a few support aircraft based on CdG practice. That's where I get 36. Physically could you spot more? Perhaps. But as I said, you're getting into diminishing or even negative returns in terms of sortie generation because of challenges in moving and spotting aircraft.

The 50 spot figure for a "light" carrier is pretty much what they came up with for T-CBL and CVV back in the late 1970s (sized around the A-7). Accounting for larger modern aircraft gets you more or less the numbers I gave above. I think it's a pretty defensible guesstimate, anyway.
 

marauder2048

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Interesting reading here: https://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.1027.7266&rep=rep1&type=pdf



View attachment 646595
That's 72 aircraft in a Nimitz, with a nominal capacity of 80 F/A-18 equivalents.

A CVL (really more like a CVV in size) probably has about 2/3 the deck area and hangar area, so roughly 50 F/A-18 equivalents. The comparable wing for a CVV might look like this, with around half the tactical aircraft.

F-35C281.2434.72
E-2D41.716.84
CMV-22B21.362.76
MQ-26A41.14.4
H-6040.512.04

The MQ-25 number is a SWAG, the CMV-22B number is based on the MV-22 and comparing against some numbers for Marine aircraft including F-35B. And yeah, I was surprised to see that the spot factor for the Osprey on amphibs was actually larger than for the F-35B.

The F/A-18E/F/G has basically the same spot factor as an F-35C (1.23), so you can swap them one for one but you need to include EF-18Gs in the mix, so it's maybe 24 F/A-18E/F and 4 EF-18G.
F-35C Spot factor is 1.16.
The Super Hornet is 1.24
 

marauder2048

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They don't have the magazine space to really function as a strike carrier for a prolonged period,
A bit of a red herring. Magazine depth is only going to be a bottleneck at the very high-end Ford KPP SGRs
where you have non-degraded ISR and an uber target rich environment.

But since those SGRs are only attainable, with the projected CVW, with fairly short hops this isn't a real issue.

Because:

Against the very modest ASCM threat posed by the Iraqis, the Navy elected to operate its carriers
no closer than 300 nmi away from Kuwait City.

But the reality is that CVLs are likely going to be doing the basic air defense of detached surface
groups along with the ASuW, ASW + other mission sets rather than overland power projection.
 

H_K

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The MN is stating that PANG will carry up to 30 SCAF, and I'm adding a few support aircraft based on CdG practice.

The MN and USN have different practices... the French don’t load up their hangar and flight deck to the extent that they could. For example, CdG was designed for 36 F/A-18s at USN density levels, but never gets loaded past 26 fixed wing.

In my analysis, using similar density factors that allow for easy aircraft deck movements in an operational environment I get 25 aircraft in deck park on both CVF and PANG. In the hangar, given that CdG’s hangar is sized for 18 Rafales (or 20 F/A-18s), it stands to reason that the 20% larger hangar aboard CVF or PANG could take 20-22 aircraft easily.

Another way to look at this is to look at GW1: USS Midway had 56 fixed wing aircraft aboard (F/A-18s and A-6s), CV-67 and CVN-71 had 78 fixed wing. With a 15% across-the-board cut to reduce deck park density to enable modern flight deck ops, you’d get ~46 aircraft aboard CV-41 today vs ~65 aboard a CVN.
 

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Not wishing to start a major argument, but to me CVL suggests something smaller than CVF or PANG, what about something based on the America class LPH?
 

marauder2048

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Not wishing to start a major argument, but to me CVL suggests something smaller than CVF or PANG, what about something based on the America class LPH?
Most of the future fleet architecture studies have gone towards a CVL based on the America class.
With alternate proposals for 65,000 ton CVMs and a CVN LX design that looks a lot like PANG.
 

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Not wishing to start a major argument, but to me CVL suggests something smaller than CVF or PANG, what about something based on the America class LPH?

People seem to default to the America class, but that shows a terrible lack of imagination IMHO. The consensus seems to be that they really aren’t optimal aviation platforms.

Maybe something in that same size range could work as a STOVL carrier, but it would have to look a lot more like a proper carrier (eg. Charles de Gaulle), with big deck overhangs and a big hangar for greater aviation capacity and easier aircraft movements.
 

marauder2048

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Not wishing to start a major argument, but to me CVL suggests something smaller than CVF or PANG, what about something based on the America class LPH?

People seem to default to the America class, but that shows a terrible lack of imagination IMHO. The consensus seems to be that they really aren’t optimal aviation platforms.

Maybe something in that same size range could work as a STOVL carrier, but it would have to look a lot more like a proper carrier (eg. Charles de Gaulle), with big deck overhangs and a big hangar for greater aviation capacity and easier aircraft movements.
Across the future fleet studies, the CVLs were invariably STOVL with the possibility of doing a Midway-class like SCB-110 modernization program
conversion to CATOBAR.
 

uk 75

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Perhaps it is Cold War nostalgia but the air group of a Nimitz/Forrestal carrier in 1990 with F14s, A6s, and S3s plus AEW, COD and helo ASW seems a lot more capable than what is being looked at today.
If all that is needed today is an F35/ASW helo platform maybe an updated Essex class could produce the numbers needed.
The LHD derived design would be another go at the old Sea Control ship which still has all the limitations.
 

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The LHD derived design would be another go at the old Sea Control ship which still has all the limitations.

I’ve always felt like Nassco’s 25-knot, 46,000 ton Alaskan ro-ros would be a much better starting point for a modern clean-sheet CVL design.

They’re fast ships with excellent seakeeping and electric drive. Start with that big, empty design, add naval compartimentation, big overhangs and structural reinforcements for a flight deck... should make a cracking affordable medium CV. Would have to be new-build of course with lots of detailed design changes, but the basic hull and propulsion would be sound.


Couple nice shots of this ship in the first 60s of this video:
View: https://vimeo.com/50057526
 
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marauder2048

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The LHD derived design would be another go at the old Sea Control ship which still has all the limitations.

I’ve always felt like Nassco’s 25-knot, 46,000 ton Alaskan ro-ros would be a much better starting point for a modern clean-sheet CVL design. Fast ships with excellent seakeeping and electric drive. Start with that big, empty design, add naval compartimentation, big overhangs and structural reinforcements for a flight deck... should make a cracking affordable medium CV.

And probably no ability to pass a FSST; that's been the history of COTS-based designs.
You'd be better off just acquiring it as such and using shipping-container based missile systems. There is a need for that.
 

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I wouldn't get too steamed up about the aircraft capacities of CVF, CdG or PANG, for the first time in naval history the carrier airwings are constrained by how many aircraft you can actually afford rather than how many you can stow aboard. So there is no point building a carrier with far more room than you could ever use. Of course UCAVs might switch that balance, but we've yet to see a true low-cost UCAV and is doubtful whether France could afford a fleet of 40-50 SCAF-N and 80-120 loyal wingmen to go with them, would cost far more than the ship probably.

Maybe the more the USMC operates from QE & PoW the more they might get used to the concept of a smaller carrier. I cant imagine the USN accepting anything smaller than CVF or PANG. CVF shows that a capable carrier can be built without recourse to expensive nuclear power and the long lead-times and construction times that creates (though sufficient power generation for EMLAS would be a concern). If the USN wants to match Chinese carrier construction pace, building a Ford every 8 years isn't going to keep up when China can probably build 4 or 5 carriers in the same time if it wanted to.
 

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The LHD derived design would be another go at the old Sea Control ship which still has all the limitations.

I’ve always felt like Nassco’s 25-knot, 46,000 ton Alaskan ro-ros would be a much better starting point for a modern clean-sheet CVL design.

They’re fast ships with excellent seakeeping and electric drive. Start with that big, empty design, add naval compartimentation, big overhangs and structural reinforcements for a flight deck... should make a cracking affordable medium CV. Would have to be new-build of course with lots of detailed design changes, but the basic hull and propulsion would be sound.

Civilian shipping vessels are the antithesis of a good basis for any warship, let alone a CV. These vessels are unable to survive more than a minor flooding or fire event with their lax design standards and minimal crew. They have no consideration for battle damage, be it above or below the waterline. This is not a ship that could survive a torpedo hit like a CV is expected to.

Additionally, these ships have very little electrical generation capacity beyond the absolute basics; they would require a complete revision of the propulsion system to provide tens of megawatts for the combat systems and aviation facilities. They have very poor acceleration and maneuverability, characteristics which a CV needs to execute its mission.

I wouldn't get too steamed up about the aircraft capacities of CVF, CdG or PANG, for the first time in naval history the carrier airwings are constrained by how many aircraft you can actually afford rather than how many you can stow aboard. So there is no point building a carrier with far more room than you could ever use. Of course UCAVs might switch that balance, but we've yet to see a true low-cost UCAV and is doubtful whether France could afford a fleet of 40-50 SCAF-N and 80-120 loyal wingmen to go with them, would cost far more than the ship probably.

Maybe the more the USMC operates from QE & PoW the more they might get used to the concept of a smaller carrier. I cant imagine the USN accepting anything smaller than CVF or PANG. CVF shows that a capable carrier can be built without recourse to expensive nuclear power and the long lead-times and construction times that creates (though sufficient power generation for EMLAS would be a concern). If the USN wants to match Chinese carrier construction pace, building a Ford every 8 years isn't going to keep up when China can probably build 4 or 5 carriers in the same time if it wanted to.

Nuclear power does not massively extend build timelines for US CVNs. The US can and has built CVNs far faster than they do currently; several of the Nimitz-class went from keel laying to commissioning in the same timespan that Ford took just to launch. Just moving CVNs to a three year build cycle, which had been proposed, would require modest investments that would be paid back relatively quickly due to improved production efficiencies.

But that isn't going to happen, because build schedule in the US is heavily predicated on fleet goals and budget compromises. The USN aims to have 11 CVNs, though that number is eternally up to debate, and adjusts its build schedule to maintain that as best as possible. CVN-80 was intentionally pushed to a 2028 commissioning date to match shipbuilding plans,for due to actual pace of physical construction, for example.

The PLAN rate of shipbuilding is irrelevant as far as the USN long range shipbuilding plan is concerned, because the PLAN is building an entirely new fleet from scratch, while the USN is maintaining theirs. While the pace with which they are growing their navy is most impressive, they cannot maintain it forever because they, like us, have finite resources. Eventually they will have to stabilize their fleet size or Third Reich themselves into economic oblivion. What actually matters is the end goal of the PLAN: how many ships do they intend to build, of what classifications and capabilities, and how do they intend to employ them? By 2030? 2040?
 

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@totallyaverage My point I guess is that if the USN settles for LHAs as its starting point for CVL, then it will end up with minimum change carriers that are only minor improvements on those LHAs, with all the same flaws.

The alternative I’m suggesting is to start with something closer to a blank sheet of paper, of similar size but which can be built from the ground up as a real carrier. But instead of starting from complete scratch, I’m pointing out that the Orca class might make a good conceptual starting point / “parent hull” due to good hull hydrodynamics, seakeeping and load carrying capability. Plus I like the electric propulsion. You’d still have to redesign 90% of the details (scantlings, compartmentation, rudders/fin stabilizers, switching out civilian diesel generators for medium RPM diesels on shock hardened mounts, everything above the waterline etc), but the end result might end up looking more like a proper carrier IMHO.
 

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Reinventing the wheel isn't going to make carrier aviation appreciably cheaper. The posts here focus on the production cost of the ship and seem to ignore manning, life cycle, and air wing costs. Also I presume we are substituting the new CVs one for one, or else we also have to add in the costs of additional escorts.

I would be more interested in reducing crew size and aircraft expense rather than reducing purchase price and size. I'm not necessarily wedded to nuclear power, but as soon as you start with a clean slate design you add a lot of R&D costs and a new set of support infrastructure to the existing infrastructures of Ford and Nimitz, which aren't going anywhere any time soon. Changing the base platform doesn't seem to generate a lot of savings without a massive downgrade in capability that calls naval aviation into question altogether, IMO.
 

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There was an article on You Tube the other day that said China had cancelled or deferred carrier 5 and 6. It seemed to suggest that they were having difficult in the detail design of the power plant and in the EMALS system.
 

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I remember reading an article to that effect somewhere, but the takeaway was that the nuclear plant was the stumbling block. And that was apparently the direction they wanted to go rather than oil, if the article was to be believed. It makes sense for the PLAN to go nuclear: they lack the global network of bases that the US operates. A US CVBG is generally only a couple time zones from refueling point anywhere in the world.
 

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Interesting reading, the Ford's are pretty expensive, it'd be curious to find out how much of that split is the A1B's, vs. all the fancy electric elevators, EMALS, AN/SPY-3/4 and advanced arresting gear. Who really believes the USN will go with USS America LHA STOVL derivatives? Too little bang for the buck. The CVF's are nice but $5B for STOVL on a 72,000 ton, 284m ship? What's the marginal cost to go an extra 16m, 10,000 tons and CATOBAR?

FWIW, the last conventional carrier JFK, CV-67, was 82,000 ton, 300m (at WL), with 4 C-13 steam catapults, and a 210MW propulsion plant. The difference of size of flight deck from the JFK to the Ford is less than 10%, 199,000 sqft. vs 213,000 sqft. CVF and PANG are both roughly 110 MW propulsion/power systems. The LHD-8/LHA-6 CODLOG is 52 MW for propulsion, but the installed power is 2 X LM25000+ @26MW/ea., 6 Fairbanks Morse Diesel Engines @ 4MW, and 2 x 3.7MW electrical engines, 83.4 MW. Double that, 186.8 MW and it's not a bad start for a propulsion plant to replace JFK's boiler's.

Replace the LM2500+ with LM600 @ 53MW a piece and things start to look pretty good, 4 x 53MW plus 12 x 4 MW is 260MW, not a bad place to start. As for life cycle costs, yes, I've completed SPRD Lvl 3 and get life cycle cost, but given oil prices are too low to produce Permian today, the whole calculation for nuclear is seriously skewed, IMHO. If they could pull off a modern day JFK with CODLAOG $6-7B/copy it would be worth a serious look.
 

marauder2048

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Interesting reading, the Ford's are pretty expensive, it'd be curious to find out how much of that split is the A1B's, vs. all the fancy electric elevators, EMALS, AN/SPY-3/4 and advanced arresting gear
RAND's "Future Aircraft Carrier Options" has Navy Program Office data showing one reactor A1B propulsion plant ship-set cost at $1 billion.

Per the SAR:

AAG = $195.2M
EMALS = $532.6M

DBR was ~ $300M in FY2008 $.
 

zen

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Certainly the QE class have the stores and magazine capacity to sustain high intensity operations.
Not likely to see such use by the RN save in exceptional cases.

But relevant to any US appraisal has to be the much lower crew numbers as well. A hidden saving.

CVF cost so much due to delays in ordering, and having not built large CVs since Ark Royal. For the US, building such ought to be easier and cheaper.
 

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If they could pull off a modern day JFK with CODLAOG $6-7B/copy it would be worth a serious look.

Might be possible to get pretty close to that number. Take LHA-7, double the cost for a 90,000 ton hull (assuming no scale efficiencies in cost-per-ton), keep the same electronics costs and project overhead, add EMALS+AAG:

LHA-7 -> Conventional 90,000t carrier
$ 3,000M (basic construction cost + propulsion, change orders etc) x2 = $6,000M
$ 500M electronics & armament
$ 150M design & project management
$ 600M EMALS
$ 250M AAG
= $7.5 billion

(All numbers from the Navy’s SCN budget: https://www.secnav.navy.mil/fmc/fmb/Documents/21pres/SCN_Book.pdf)
 

mkellytx

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If they could pull off a modern day JFK with CODLAOG $6-7B/copy it would be worth a serious look.

Might be possible to get pretty close to that number. Take LHA-7, double the cost for a 90,000 ton hull (assuming no scale efficiencies in cost-per-ton), keep the same electronics costs and project overhead, add EMALS+AAG:

LHA-7 -> Conventional 90,000t carrier
$ 3,000M (basic construction cost + propulsion, change orders etc) x2 = $6,000M
$ 500M electronics & armament
$ 150M design & project management
$ 600M EMALS
$ 250M AAG
= $7.5 billion

(All numbers from the Navy’s SCN budget: https://www.secnav.navy.mil/fmc/fmb/Documents/21pres/SCN_Book.pdf)
Good stuff H_K. Conventional propulsion also means that it could be built somewhere other than Newport News, wonder how much the cost of the Ford's come down if they seriously look at building a CV.
 

H_K

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Conventional propulsion also means that it could be built somewhere other than Newport News, wonder how much the cost of the Ford's come down if they seriously look at building a CV.

Yes. NASSCO could build the hull modules in San Diego, with final fit-out in Newport News if necessary. Going back to steam cats and hydraulic arrestor gear would save another $700M. Together that might bring the price down closer to $6B... IF (big if) the USN could avoid gold plating everything.
 

marauder2048

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My guess: it's going to be the CV LX in the RAND study which was based on NAVSEA's LHA Flight 1 study;
an 8-ft increase in LHA-6's beam at the waterline which permits a larger flight deck (820 x 120) and hangar.

25 - 35 embarked F-35Bs and a sustained SGR/day that's awfully close to QE/PoW.
 

marauder2048

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Was that study a CATOBAR or STOVL?
STOVL so far as I can tell ("LHA Flight 1 Study Report", NAVSEA, 2012).

And then some of the other future fleet architecture studies have used that as a basis for
a Midway-class like SCB-110 program CATOBAR conversion in some future flight.
 

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